It's a fact of life that your relationship with your parents changes once you have your own kids. Some find their interactions take on a whole new meaning once little ones are in the mix, both positive and negative.
A frustrated mother of four children under the age of four has taken to Reddit to vent her frustration, saying her own mum sees her as a slacker because she doesn't work outside the home.
The post titled, "My mum has the mentality that I'm slacking as a mum because I'm not working myself to death for my kids," begins with the OP detailing her mother's attitude towards her.
"I woke up to being berated by my mum this morning because I drank one beer last night. ONE fu*#ing beer," she wrote.
"You can't do that. You're a mum. Mums don't get a break," she apparently said.
The OP then asks the ether, "Why? Why is it that I'm not allowed to take a break? Why do I need to work myself to death to prove that I'm a good enough mum?"
Here's the backstory.
"I am temporarily staying with my mum because we sold our house and decided not to buy one just yet (tight financial situation). Husband works in another city and comes home on the weekends. I've been staying here one month so far but this has been an always thing. I'm a SAHM and a single parent five days a week for all intents and purposes."
She has four very young children - a 4-year-old, 2.5-year-old twins, and an 11-month-old baby.
"I make sure they're fed, bathed and attended to. I spend time with them, read to them, play with them. I clean as I go along the day. Sometimes I forget to transfer the wet clothes to the dryer. Sometimes I forget other sh*t that in the grand scheme of things probably isn't important because I spent that time with my babies," she writes.
Being very young, her kids also have their fair share of lurgies.
"My kids have been non-stop sick since my oldest started school this year. I haven't had one full night of sleep in three months. They all have conjunctivitis right now and two had fevers overnight. I work from home and am currently completing online courses that can hopefully help me find a better job."
That's a lot for anyone, right? Not according to her mother.
"I love my mum, please don't get me wrong. She's set in her ways and she's never going to change, I get it. She isn't always like this, either. She helps me SO much but it's never "free". Her help always comes with criticism about how I can do this or that better or how she never had to do that or how this would have never happened to her."
Redditors weigh in with their thoughts, which help to make her feel supported.
One writes, "Man that internalised misogyny mothers try to push off on us can be exhausting. My mother thinks of herself as progressive and some of the stuff she says can be disheartening."
"We have a fantastic relationship, but they are very critical too, and they are the type to tell me that I'm doing something totally wrong before they even utter another word, or even offer another suggestion," writes another.
Another says, "Of course you deserve a break. All parents do. It makes for a healthier, happier mum! I think you need to just stop listening to her. She has no idea what she's talking about."
The OP responds, "Thank you so much for this. I have resorted to just listening and responding with "Thank you for your opinion" and moving on."
She also says moving out is on the cards.
"We've talked about moving out and finally having our own space to breathe and have silence (because it's not just my mum... his parents give us sh*t too) but we want to pay off some of the debt we have so that we can be better off."
Another person sees the situation from another point of view, but is gentle with the OP.
"We all deserve breaks...and beers. You know that. I am sure your mum loves you and even though you have a good relationship, she's probably tired of having six people, four who are under five years old in her house. Even if she's not completely sick of it, it is added stress."
They advise, "You should look for a place of your own so you and your mother continue to have a good relationship and you don't end up resenting one another."
The thread has 147 comments relating similar stories, tales of woe and far more drinking than one single solitary beer. The OP ends up feeling supported and glad she could get this off her chest.
She edits the original post, writing, "Thank you to everyone for your kindness and support. Sometimes it feels lonely to not have someone to talk to but you guys have made my day!"